Assistive device – Pill Pusher

This term’s first challenge was to design and build a robotic assistive device to help with some problem.

The robot we made was a pill dispensing robot for use with patients with either a mental illness or a an inability to take the correct dosage of their medication at the right time. The pill pusher stores medication into easy to use capsules with capacity to hold a number of individual pills. We decided to make the product as simple possible while still retaining appropriate function.


We conducted research into whether or not our product was already a reality. When we found that it was we researched on how to make our version our own.

The brain storming that we did was mostly planning of the design of the product. With the pill pusher as our first and best idea, we decided to continue and plan out a design. The other ideas we came up with were a form of hearing aid and

We only made one device, we did however plan it out thoroughly gaining a list of materials beforehand and assembling it in sections.

We completed the build early and spent the remaining time fine tuning and trouble shooting. One of the problems faced was the machine dispensing more capsules than necessary.

This problem was fixed with a dob of hot glue to make an improvised stopper for the capsules and a stand to lift the device. Another problem encountered was the winch breaking, the anchor point that attached to the block had come undone. We fixed this and reinforced the anchor point so as to better hold the cord. There was some human error during the repair.

The end result of this project was a perfectly functioning robot that did exactly what it intended to do. The improvement that could have been made is all quality of life, such as locks, a better sound alarm or more advanced timer. The time management after we finish the build in the second lesson could have been better and used to add some of those improvements. However as mentioned before this time was not wasted and instead used fine tune the Pill pusher.


Alarmy McJig

The challenge

Create an assistive device.

What we made

Alarmy-McJig is an assistive device that when a button is pressed it will activate a band with a vibrating function on the wrist to help people that can’t hear their doorbell.


  • A button that activates a vibrating motor.
  • A motion sensor that activates a vibrating motor.

Evaluation and reflection

  • How well did you meet the challenge requirements?

We didn’t meet the requirements very well at all.

  • What would you do next if you had more time?

Manage it better.

  • What did you learn?

To manage our time better.

  • How could your team perform better next time?

Time management.

Assistive Device Elevator

Description – An assistive device modelled primarily off conventional elevators that’s designed to help people with mobility problems primarily move floors and even rooms.

Inspiration – As partly mentioned in the description, much of our prototype inspiration was based off a conventional elevator, one that assists people moving between floors and rooms. This elevator however utilises a unique colour sensor that allows it to seamlessly adapt to different floor levels without much human input.

Future Plans – With more time, we would be able to construct a more accurately detailed prototype that better fits our original project proposal, and showcase other design models of the elevator, such as elevator mobility between not only floors but rooms as well, a compact horizontal mobility assistive device.


B.I.N. is a functioning robotic rubbish bin.

The idea was to develop a bin which could stop and start with the use of a sensor. There would also be a separate sensor, if you wave foot or hand over it, it would open the lid. Easy and simple to use, works like a bin.


It was it was the last idea that was available, out of the three ideas originally. Those ideas being a serving device for medication that will automatically serve the perfect amount of drugs (meant for elderly), a portable door alarm that will notify you if a person is at the door via watch/phone notification (meant for poor hearing people), and an arm (meant for amputees), these ideas were good but other groups had already chosen them, and the arm was already done multiple times before.

The idea was a well known invention used almost every day within homes. we just decided to give it wheels and sensors for the appropriate action, like moving on a set track and opening the lid with a wave or object coming into contact with said sensor.

What we learnt is that we need more parts to built big robots and programming is harder than it looks.

The Outcome

It all worked, but with trial and error. Like figuring out the right way to build the robot, to keep the lid on top, and hold it together.

In the ideal situation of this being in a cafeteria, it would have a track that would be under the floor along with the electronics so if people were to try and pick it up and mess with the technical components, it would be harder to do. it would also need to be make the bin stand and the lid of a stronger material too withstand larger/fuller bin.

Future Plans

With a little more work and a lot more effort, it could be made into a delivery robot. If it were to be running of a GPS related system, it would be able to move on footpaths in cities and could be activated with a QR code or something like that and it would unlock revealing your package.

In a similar way you could add a table top and make it run on a track in a restaurant as a server with a shell to keep your food warm/hot. It would also open with an order code or a scannable tag.

Team members

  • Harrison
  • Jameson
  • Nick
  • Isaac
  • Jack



Screenshot of program

Big Bits

Device displaying 7 in binary

Big Bits is a visual representation of binary, aimed to help students learn what binary is. Big Bits can hold 16 different states (4 bits).

Planning and Design

Problems with learning binary:

  • It is overwhelming
  • A learning curve
  • Usually only taught from reading texts

Learning binary can be overwhelming and complicated for new student. Others have attempted to find a solution to this problem, such as intricate wooden devices. You can find one here.

 I believe a device that is interactive but still simple is the best solution to this problem.

A very early design of the project

My teacher contributed a generous amount of code. How it works:

  1. The program starts with the decimal number 1
  2. Decimal number is converted into binary
  3. Move the correct bit’s motor (up if bit is 1, down if bit is 0)
  4. Increment the decimal number by one and loop

My motive for the project was to help teach binary.


I was originally creating a braille character displayer which used the same motors, when my teacher suggested a better idea. I believe it turned out for the best.

If I had more time I would add four bits onto it, so I could have a byte.

Animation of Big Bits changing values
Table of 4 bit binary combinations
Code showing decimal to binary

SAB: Self Alarm Bracelet

We thought that the standard alarm bracelet was not simple enough to uses so my team mate and I decided to make a new and simpler self alarm bracelet.

What inspired our idea was that so many of the alarm key chain that you have to pull out and the chain  then the alarm will go off. We believed this method was flawed as it could be easily stopped. SAB was made with the idea of automating the processes and being able tot send a signal to the police with your coordinates to reduce response time.

Early on in the concept of SAB we thought of using Arduino but switched to using MicroBit instead as it had an inbuilt radio and accelerometer, this reduced the size of the prototype bracelet as there was no need for an external radio or accelerometer. The case for the MicroBit was made using an 3D printer.

MicroBit uses Python coding witch started out being easy but due be unused to using Python we got trapped by some of the little nuances of Python. This slowed the development of the code for SAB.

Proof Of Concept Design
Sender and Receiver Micro-bits
Receiver Code
Sender Code

SAB: Self Alarm Bracelet was designed by Kessler and MJ

Bench Bot

The challenge for this project was to make an assistive robot to help with a variety of things.

Our approach to this was to build a robot that helps to wipe down things such as a kitchen bench.

We decided to do this by building a pretty standard but also sturdy robot with a sponge mounted that would drive around a bench and clean it. We found that this was a better approach than something such as remote control, because with Bench Bot you turn it on, press a button then it automatically will clean a bench that it is put on.

Something that might be of comparison to Bench Bot could potentially be a Roomba. A Roomba is an automatic vacuum that will clean the floors of your house or building without assistance.

Bench Bot was our final project, but before we started building we brainstormed a variety of things to help with assisting people.

  • An automatic filer.
  • A bionic arm.
  • Dispenser for a multitude of objects

Pictures of Bench Bot in its almost final form. After this from we added a second ultrasonic sensor to make sure it couldn’t possibly fall off the table.

For this challenge, I feel that Bench Bot was fairly successful as an assistive device. If more time was given or time was used in the best way, I feel more things could’ve been added to make Bench Bot better. A water source could’ve been implemented to make it less difficult to run and setup. A better design might have been a better approach as bench bot currently looks pretty boring.

Tom and Miley.

The Foot 2.0

We were thinking of building legs that could support people with no or little control over their legs. This project turned out to be a too big. We decided to reduce the project to just the ankle. Kessler gave us this idea because he has ankle trouble.

We built a prototype that was too weak so we had to come up with a stronger design.

We used the Lego EV3 brick and Lucas came up with a stronger design of the ankle part that connects the foot part. This was the part the broke before.

Kessler, Tyson, Eric and Lucas all worked to get the project to succeed.